New Year’s Round-Up

24 Jan
January 24, 2012

You guys, I have so much to tell you about what’s been going on the past couple of weeks. But first, a link round-up:

From Twitter and Google+

MegaUpload shut down! Everybody freak out. Detailed discussion here. Older discussion of MegaUpload’s compliance with DMCA here.

It’s a Girl – Fantastic and heartbreaking article from The Independent about sexism affecting birth ratios of boys and girls around the world.

iBooks Author – Everyone’s super excited about Apple’s new textbooks platform, but note that they have some tricky restrictions about ownership of content. Meaning that anything you publish through iBooks is theirs.

Santorum on Rape Victims – Rick Santorum once again demonstrates his lack of worth as a human being by telling rape victims who subsequently became pregnant to make the best out of a bad situation, and that the pregnancy is really “a gift”. Hey Rick, go to hell. Twitter user @desifeminista sums up the Republican stance on women’s rights:

If a woman in a vegetative state is going to die: organize to save her life! If a mom is dying while giving birth: LET HER DIE! #FLdebate

The Worst Project I Ever Funded on Kickstarter – Internet entrepreneur Matt Haughey talks about what not to do if you’re trying to raise funds for your product via Kickstarter, the crowd-sourced investment vehicle.

WTF is with empowered women in video games now – These gamers are OUTRAGED that female characters in video games are actually–gasp–just as good as male characters. How dare these game companies say that women can be just as good as men in a fictional universe with gravitational improbabilities that I could never survive in real life!

Nerds and Male Privilege – Speaking of, my new favourite blog Dr. Nerdlove talks about why nerds are often unaware of their male privilege, and how that can hamper them in dating.

English Pronunciation – Read this poem out loud. Can you pronounce every word in it?

Congress Wants to Kill Open-Access Journals – You’ll be paying for JSTOR for a long time if these assholes succeed.

No New Sign-Ups – Popular tech forum YCombinator disabled account sign-ups for a day to prevent an influx of Reddit users due to the SOPA Reddit shutdown. It turned into an interesting discussion on how to maintain community culture.

YouTube round-up:

World’s Coolest Flight Attendant
The Gorillaz’s Feel Good Inc. Live-Looped – my new girl crush!
The Lion King Set to The Dark Knight Rises Trailer
A Cat Plays Fruit Ninja on the iPad

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From The Blog

Commentary

Going Dark In Protest of SOPA – I shut down the blog for one day in protest against SOPA and wrote an informational post about it, for those who are not familiar with what it is. Follow-up post coming soon.

Android’s Ideology – I discuss the relative merits of boycotting a company’s products because you disagree with them ideologically, and why this can sometimes be a red herring. There’s a fun discussion about this over on Google Plus.

Links

The Monster In Your Brain – JT Eberhardt’s elegant summation of what it feels like to be depressed.

Debt Matters Not All That Much – Paul Krugman argues why focusing in debt in the US economy is just a smokescreen.

Rolling Stone is Sexist? Who Would’ve Thought – Another round of sexism in advertising stuff, this time based on the covers of Rolling Stone magazine.

40 Nice Things About Newt – New Yorker columnist John Cassidy asks his readers to say some nice things about Newt Gingrich, for once, with amusing results.

Words and their Meaning – Johnson talks about semantic drift in political lingo. Or: the way words’ meanings change when wielded by pundits with an agenda.

Jim Crow 2.0 – Kicking off the new year with some fun stuff about voter ID laws and voter disenfranchisement.

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Elsewhere

2:37 AM – one of my pieces from the writing section has been edited and published over at Write-A-Holic. A big thanks to Valentina for doing the polishing for me! Go give them some pageviews.

Ladies Learning Code – LLC is a fantastic Toronto-based organization trying to make the world of computer development more friendly to women. I attended a workshop a few weeks ago as one of their mentors. Write-up coming soon.

Happy New Year! Here’s me with a jaunty hat.